March 26, 2005

Another dangling modifier

Here's another "stunningly inept" dangling modifier for Geoff Pullum's collection, from a post by amberglow over at metafilter:

Pegged to head the World Bank, is Wolfowitz' lover, Shaha Riza, one of the reasons we invaded Iraq?

Paul Wolfowitz is the one who has been nominated to head the World Bank -- his alleged "lover" already works there.

According to a story in the Daily Mail, Wolfowitz has been linked romantically to Shaha Ali Riza, said to be "the acting manager for External Relations and Outreach for the Middle East and North Africa Region at the World Bank", and formerly "the Gender and Civil Society Coordinator" for the same organization. Riza, said to have been born in Tunis, "grew up in Saudi Arabia and was passionately committed to democratising the Middle East when she allegedly began to date Wolfowitz". Her academic background includes the London School of Economics and Oxford, and she was previously married to a Turkish Cypriot.

To the extent that all this is anybody's business at all, it seems to me like a heart-warming story of improving international understanding. But this is Language Log, and so we do have business with that modifier.

Posted by Mark Liberman at March 26, 2005 07:07 PM